BLS Featured CMLSO: Jean-Yves Latreille
1. Who are you?
My name is Jean Yves Latreille and I am a Perioperative Nurse for the last 31 years. From early in my career, I was fascinated with lasers.
2. What is your educational background?
I became a Nurse in 1980 through college and two years after, I transferred to the operating room where I got trained at the Montreal General Hospital of the McGill University Health Centre a tertiary and trauma centre facility. I got my certification as a peri-operative Nurse with the Canadian Nurse Association (C.N.A.) in 1995. I had my training as a laser safety officer both at Laser Institute of America and Rockwell Laser Industries.
3. Where do you work?
I work now for Clarion Medical Technologies Inc. who distributes lasers in Canada. I started part time with the company back in 1995 mostly on weekends as I had my full time position at the hospital; I was then hired full time in 2002. I provide laser safety and laser safety officer courses to our clients that acquire our products as well as complementary services as audits, etc.
I serve as the chair of the sub-committee on laser safety with the Canadian Standard Association. I revise laser standard for our national peri-operative organization the Operating Room Nurses Association of Canada. (O.R.N.A.C.)
I give courses and conferences for O.R.N.A.C and my own provincial organization here in Québec: The Corporation of Operating Room Nurses of Québec which I am involve in the organizations since 1994 and became president from 1998 to 2000. I am also an affiliate professor for continuous education at École polytechnique de Montréal, Université de Montréal.
4. When did you start working with lasers?/ How long have you worked with lasers?
My first laser case took place in 1985 at the Montreal General Hospital; it was a colposcopy case with a CO2 laser. We performed many different laser procedures with different types of laser. I became in love with this technology and since I am blessed with good troubleshooting skills, my name became associated to laser technology so I got the call when something was not right. I then got more and more involved in laser procedures.
In 2002, I jumped on a great opportunity as the hospital opened a Laser Centre and I was chosen to work there. We did all different types of procedures in many specialties like ophthalmology, (lids, ocular and refractive) general surgery, (gastric and colorectal) thoracic, (tumors and webs) plastics and dermatology, (vascular and pigmented lesions, facial resurfacing, tattoo removal, warts) and ENT (LAUP and oral lesions).
I believe then that the laser center mission was also to educate and so in 2004, I started providing laser safety courses locally and the company called then Coherent-AMT Inc (which became Clarion Medical Technology Inc.) started hiring me on a part time basis as a consultant which evolved to the full time position I was offered in 2002. I have been working around lasers since 1985.
5. How did you become the LSO?
I became the MLSO when the former left, it seemed to be a logical choice for the laser committee to have me become the MLSO because of my experience as a laser Nurse.
6. Do you like being the MLSO?/ Challenges of “todays” MLSO?
I love being a MLSO as laser technology became one of my passions. It is a challenging role and we need to stay focused in all our actions keeping in mind the reason we do this role: Patient Safety.
- We need to educate all participants in laser safety before they get involved in a case as requested by standards but not always in compliance. This is my role with the company to start their laser program and provide the education necessary.
- All laser instructors need to have at least 2 years clinical experience by being actively involved in laser procedures. (New clause in C.S.A. laser standard) I believe it is directly linked to patient safety.
- Provide time and resources to the MLSO so he can fulfill his role. Sometimes the MLSO role is added to an already full list of other responsibilites by the candidate.
- We need to empower MLSO so he can fully perform his role.
7. How has becoming certified helped/benefited you in your career?
It was quite clear to me that when I heard of the certification program in 2003, I wanted to become certified and I did in 2004.
Some Advantages/Benefits are:
- Prove your committment towards excellence as MLSO
- Gives credibility in my role of providing education in laser safety and MLSO
- Attest that you are competent, current and qualify
- Show your employer that you are totally involved in your profession
The most important incentive is to do it for you.